Allegiant Air is investing millions of dollars into the Lehigh Valley International Airport making it one of their new homes. This will bring more services and more importantly jobs to our area.
Most of these jobs will be paying double the average salary in Pennsylvania. Ever since Allegiant started affordable flights to Orlando from LVIA in 2005, they've been successful. Any time they add services here, the community responds in a big way.
"Lehigh Valley International Airport will become Allegiant's next aircraft base set to begin it's operations in February 2020" SAID spokesperson Hilarie Grey.
Allegiant Air is investing 50 million dollars to build a new base in the Lehigh Valley making a home for two airplanes. Allegiant will be creating at least 66 high wage jobs including pilots, flight attendants, and maintenance crews. It's important to note this will be a base, not a hub. That means those new employees will be able to climb in their own beds after every shift.
"It's an important distinction because we're bringing jobs into the community. And jobs that will mean people are living and working here. Allegiant flies out of bases which means that aircraft that are based here - the crews and the aircraft come home at night." Grey said.
Allegiant operates out of 120 cities, but this will only be their 18th base. The non-stop flights out of Allentown to states like Florida, Tennessee, and Georgia are being sold out showing a real demand for these destinations.
"It's great to add seats. And we love to see an airline show up to the airport to add more seats, more routes. But it really doesn't mean much if we're not filling those seats." said Northampton Lehigh Airport Authority's executive director Thomas Stoudt.
Stoudt said a growing airport means much more than ticket sales.
"But it's a really good indicator of a region's economy and it's vibrancy when you see the airport is successful" he said.
Of course, everybody's wondering if there will be any new destinations available to us out of the Lehigh Valley. The answer is yes, but the spokesperson could not tell us yet. We'll let you know when we know.